I often do not take the time to reflect on my own life. Where does the time go? When I was in my youth, I wanted to be older. Now that I am older, I ask for time to slow down. There are so many things I have and want to do: spend more time doing photography, painting, writing, time with my family and friends and continuing with my coaching and consulting practice. On the days that I spend with my grandson, I am fascinated by his pace. He is a very active two and a half year old and yet he is very inquisitive. When we walk together with the pups racing ahead, he pauses, looks to the ground at a little speck or rock, and says, "What just a minute, I need to look at this." Or as we walk, he will stop, listen to the sounds and ask, "What is that, Mema?" (his word for grammy).
To be able to pause is a luxury today. Most of us pause for vacations but to pause and reflect is a greater challenge. To take the time to just pause in our social media and busy lives can feel extravagant. I just resigned as Chair and member of a Board for an outstanding organization, the Good Shepherd Food Bank. Although this was a difficult decision, the time was right for me. The work will be continued by others who are very capable and who I respect.
I spent a lot of hours at the food bank. I find now I have gaps in time. The tendency is to fill the gap by joining another Board or by filling the time with "activities." I am not. In my coaching practice, I encourage people when they leave a company, sell their business or have a major change, to just pause for reflection.
Reflection can give us the time to savor the moments we had and look forward to what might come next. When was the last time you paused for reflection? What did you learn about yourself?